Sunday, September 21, 2008

Lincoln Kidnapping Conspirator Dies

On September 21 1906 one of the last of the Lincoln conspirators died. Samuel Bland Arnold was involved with other in a plan to kidnap the President and hold him for the exchange of Confederate prisoners. Mr. Arnold along with John Wilkes Booth, David Herold, Michael O’Laughlen and other tried two times to kidnap Lincoln; planning to take him to Richmond VA, but failed when his schedule changed. When the prisoner exchange began again in 1865 Arnold dropped out of the conspiracy.

Than on April 14th 1865 Booth murdered President Lincoln. Samuel Arnold was arrested on April 17th, he confessed to his role in the kidnapping plan, but denied that he was involved in the assignation. He was tried, found guilty and placed in prison at Fort Jefferson on a sentenced of life. In 1869 President Andrew Johnson pardoned him along Samuel Mudd, Michael O’Laughlen, and Edmund Spangler who had been sentenced at the same time.

He returned to Fort Jefferson in 1898 to take photos of the prison [unfortunately these photos have not survived]. Just before his death Arnold wrote an article for the “Baltimore American” about in imprisonment. He is buried in Baltimore,MD at the Green Mount Cemetery. After his death the only John Surratt was left alive out of the conspirators.

For information about Samuel Bland Arnold try these web sites

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